5 Coping skills for anxiety

In this article, we will cast a look at all types of coping skills for anxiety and also learn more about anxiety and ways to deal with it. 

What are the coping skills for anxiety?

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  • Take a relaxing bath or shower
  • Engage in hobbies such as reading, writing, painting, singing, etc.
  • Entertain yourself by watching a movie
  • Enjoy a long walk in an open space surrounded by nature. 
  • Go on a vacation, a holiday, or take a well-deserved break. 
  • Exercise or play sports
  • Get some sleep
  • Go out and meet your friends
  • Have experiences that will make you laugh, cry or yell out
  • Stay away from things that could damage your physical and mental health such as drugs, or excessive drinking. Stop running away or being in denial of your problems and learn to face them. 

Causes of anxiety

Anxiety is a mechanism that everyone experiences and is essential to enhance productiveness as well. But experiencing anxiety in excess can be detrimental to a person’s health. The cause of anxiety could be different for each person. Following are some of the commonly found causes of anxiety.

  • Stress-This could be induced by various factors such as excessive workload, environmental factors, personal problems, etc. 
  • Monetary crisis
  • Health issues
  • Substance abuse
  • Interpersonal relationships
  • Traumatic incidents
  • Hereditary

Also, some preexisting health conditions can increase anxiety. For example, a person with a fatal disease can have death anxiety or a person suffering from chronic pain might also experience anxiety.

Situational Anxiety

At times situations can also trigger anxiety in a person. Suppose a person is socially awkward then for them any social situation can generate anxiety within them. Or for some people events such as job interviews can be highly stressful and anxiety-inducing. But the anxiety experiences during such events is only limited to that particular event or situation.

Coping techniques and skills for anxiety

To counter the negative aspects of anxiety and overcome our fears some various coping skills and techniques can be utilized. Some of them are effective in the short term while some are long-lasting. Some of them act faster and showcase results sooner while some take some while to show results but are more effective in the long run. Following are the various types of skills listed according to their characteristics. 

Quick coping techniques

Breathing techniques and exercises

It is a very simple exercise that can be practiced for immediate results to alleviate the dangerous symptoms of anxiety. Anxiety can create trouble for breathing and some people may experience shortness of breath or stuffiness in the chest. To counter these negative effects of anxiety following steps could be undertaken.  

  • Taking a calm slow breath through the nose 
  • Then hold that breath for a few seconds. 
  • Releasing the breath slowly through the nose
  • This process can be repeated several times until the person feels their heart rate normalizing and a reduction in their anxiety level. 

Meditation 

Meditation is a very helpful tool in combating anxiety. It helps in calming chaotic thoughts and experiencing a trance-like peaceful state that helps in alleviating the symptoms of anxiety and also provides protection from the worried thoughts that induce the anxiety.  It might take a little time to learn the complex art of mediation but once a person learns it they can utilize it every time they are overcome with anxiety. Mediation can also be utilized as a preventive measure for anxiety as it helps in getting rid of negative thoughts.

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Aromatherapy

Aromatherapy is a very unique and interesting therapy method that supposedly activates certain brain receptors that help in reducing anxiety.  It utilizes soothing, aromatic, and pleasant scents to help ease the discomfort of the person. The scents could be derived from incense, oils, or natural sources such as lavender, chamomile flowers, and also sandalwood. 

Journaling

Journaling or writing a diary is another useful method to tone down excessive anxiety. By writing down our thoughts and fears we allow ourselves to face them and also analyze them. Once we acknowledge our fears or worries their intensity decreases and our tolerance towards them increases. Therefore it is necessary to write it down. It also helps us to relieve our stress and frustration and helps us calm our minds. 

Questioning your thought patterns

Our anxieties originate from our negative thought patterns and beliefs. If we persistently believe in them then we subject ourselves to unnecessary trauma caused by anxiety. Therefore just thought patterns should be examined and analyzed and if they are harmful and untrue then they should be disputed and eliminated. 

Helpful  remedies for anxiety

Engaging in hobbies

Taking a relaxing bath or shower

Painting, writing, or doing anything that helps you explore your creative side. 

Go out and seek entertainment such as watching a movie, show, or event. 

Take a leisurely walk in the park

Go on a vacation, take a well-deserved break

Exercise your muscles by engaging in outdoor activities or playing sports

Have a good sleeping schedule and pattern

Indulge your sweet tooth by having desserts or meals that you crave. 

Long term coping mechanism for anxiety

Therapy

For complete recovery from anxiety and eliminating its causes, therapy can be very effective. Among the various types of psychotherapies, Cognitive behavioral therapy has been found to be particularly effective in treating anxiety hence it is essential to take the help of therapy to combat anxiety issues. 

Medications

Certain medications help in calming down the physical symptoms triggered by anxiety. Various drugs are available in the market to help deal with anxiety but these prescription drugs should be taken carefully and only after consulting a psychiatrist. 

Exposure

Phobias such as agoraphobia. Hydrophobia or claustrophobia are excessive fears towards a particular, object, thing, or event. Many people find it difficult to continue their daily lives due to these phobias. But these fears could be overcome with the help of systematic desensitization. Through prolonged controlled exposure we can regulate their responses and increase their tolerance towards their fears. But this process needs to be conducted in a controlled environment under the guidance of a professional. 

Guided imagery

Anxiousness and the tensed situation can be dealt with efficiently with the help of guided imagery. If someone is tensed about an upcoming task or event guided imagery can help them complete this task by imagining it in their mind before actually attempting it. While imagining it they can go through the necessary steps in their mind and also identify any problems that could occur in real life when they will attempt it for real. Also imagining the event or task exposes them to their fears associated with it and increases their tolerance towards it thereby helping them achieve their task or goal successfully. 

Some helpful habits that help in coping with anxiety

Cutting down caffeine and alcohol

Quit smoking

Avoiding substance abuse

Consuming a healthy and nutritional diet

Reducing workload or stress-inducing activities

Engaging in physical and outdoor activities

Exercising regularly

Developing a calm and peaceful state of mind through yoga 

Avoiding toxic environment and situation

Maintaining healthy interpersonal relationships.

Having a regular and healthy amount of sleep

Thus, these were a few types of coping skills and techniques commonly utilized to help deal with various issues and disorders related to anxiety. It should be noted that everyone experiences anxiety differently and therefore not all coping mechanisms would be 

effective on them. Each individual would have to identify their coping skills and employ them accordingly.

Conclusion

This article helped us understand the various types of coping skills and their effect on anxiety. We also learned how coping skills can also differ in their characteristics and properties and therefore need to be used according to the needs of the clients and the severity of their anxiety.

Frequently asked questions

What are the 5 types of coping strategies for anxiety?

There are various coping strategies for each mental health condition. Some of them are of anxiety disorder as well which helps in dealing with the negative and difficult aspects of anxiety. Following are some of the coping strategies for anxiety

Practice relaxation exercises and deep breathing. 

Practice mindfulness and meditation to relax your core

Indulge in a nap

Explore your creativity and enjoy your hobbies and personal interests.

Hang out with friends or family and take a break from your exhaustive daily routine.

Learn and explore things and try to gain experiences that you will cherish as they can make you laugh, cry or even yell out with different emotions. 

How can I stop anxiety in 10 seconds?

Experiencing severe anxiety can be a debilitating experience. So when a person is having an episode they can try some tips to relieve their immediate symptoms to at least some degree until they could get proper help. Following are some helpful tips

Think in your that you will have to bear this only for 10 more minutes.

Concentrate on Taking a  slow and deep breath in those ten seconds. 

If you still do not feel any changes repeat the process for another ten seconds

Keep doing this until you have reduced your anxiety levels to a significant degree.  

How do I calm my overthinking thoughts?

There are various ways or self activities that can be utilized to get rid of unnecessary thoughts. Following is a list describing some of them.

Change the way you interpret things or see the situation

Do not hold onto the past.

Stop all the thoughts circulating in your mind at present and try to be in the moment. 

Try to focus and concentrate on things within your control

Do not deny your fears, identify and accept them 

Note down or discuss with everyone solutions, not your problems.

Make a promise with yourself to become an active and productive person

Can anxiety be reversed?

Unfortunately, scientific studies have provided evidence that anxiety cannot be completely cured because it is a part of our genetic makeup. While this might be a very grave concern for some people yet at the same time there are many treatment options available that help in alleviating the symptoms of anxiety and also controlling and eliminating its causes. Therefore the negative consequences caused due to anxiety can be controlled to a great extent with the appropriate treatment that enables the person suffering from anxiety to lead an almost anxiety-free life. 

What is the root of anxiety?

The roots or causes of anxiety cannot be grouped under a single category. Various factors and circumstances lead to the development of severe anxiety. For some, it could be environmental factors like workspace, personal life, or even social circle, for some anxiety could be hereditarily obtained and be a part of their genetic makeup. Childhood traumatic experiences or some kind of accident or even assault can lead to a person developing anxiety. Thus the roots of anxiety can be traced back to multiple factors. 

References

35 anxiety coping skills: A list of effective remedies. The Dawn Wellness Centre and Rehab Thailand. (2021, June 15). Retrieved February 1, 2022, from https://thedawnrehab.com/blog/anxiety-coping-skills-list/

Hirschlag, A. (2018, December 18). How to cope with anxiety: 11 simple ways and when to see a doctor. Healthline. Retrieved February 1, 2022, from https://www.healthline.com/health/mental-health/how-to-cope-with-anxiety#quick-coping-methods

MediLexicon International. (n.d.). How to cope with anxiety: Techniques, management, and more. Medical News Today. Retrieved February 1, 2022, from https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/how-to-cope-with-anxiety#quick-coping 

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